The Parks and Public Works Committee continues to make thoughtful and measured progress on the Enhance Egg Harbor road improvement project. With a few major decisions behind the committee – no to traffic light, yes on multi-use path on east side of Hwy. 42, and with the rights of way (ROW) limits sorted out with the Department of Transportation – two pieces of business were focused on at the meeting on Dec. 8.
A joint presentation was provided by Smith Group JJR and McMahon Engineering. First it was Smith Group JJR who presented the artistic and aesthetic elements that come along with creating a sense of place in a village like Egg Harbor. Their creative energy permeated the room as they moved seamlessly from one inspired element to the next. Five specific nodes or public spaces were discussed, each with a theme that was repeated for continuity throughout the village. Smith Group recommended without opposition that Egg Harbor:
- Build on the artistic culture of Egg Harbor.
- Reflect the unique spirit of the village, as contrasted with other Door communities.
- Incorporate playful elements.
- Integrate into paving, architecture, signage.
- Provide interactive and engaging elements throughout the community.
McMahon Engineering had the less alluring but perhaps more vital business of presenting nearly 30 ROW encroachments with the committee. To be clear for the purposes of the presentation, encroachments addressed structural elements that conflicted with the placement of the sidewalk and multi-use path, and were not necessarily encroachments into the ROW, a fine point that might cause most eyes to glaze over rather quickly. Methodically, the presenters for McMahon displayed pictures and distances, but more importantly resolutions to the encroachments. The overarching consensus was to work around the conflicts where possible, and work with the business owners where it’s not to present amiable solutions.
Still to be decided, to bury or not to bury overhead utilities. Village staff along with the engineering team continue to work with Wisconsin Public Service to determine costs and feasibility. It’s worth noting that the telecommunications companies also have wires to be buried with the project. Zeke Jackson, Sister Bay administrator, has been most helpful in reviewing lessons learned and costs received for their project.
Also, the committee voiced concerns about turning radii in key locations for large vehicles and turning lanes for busy entrances, like Main Street Shops.
These are exciting times for the village, and long-lasting decisions are being prepared for a village board decision. This is a generational project that is receiving the due diligence it deserves.